The last of the hairstreaks?

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Friday 15 October 2010 09:01

Whilst I was walking along the mill leat at Woods Mill yesterday (14th October) to photograph the river restoration, I noticed a medium brown butterfly struggling along in the open. The sun was quite warm  (it was  2.00 pm) but there was very little latent heat in the air, it was really cold in the shade. I thought it was too late for Gatekeeper and was probably a stray Speckled Wood. It landed in some rank grass and I was amazed to see it was a tatty female Brown Hairstreak. I posted about a male I spotted outside my office window but that was on  the 16th August, almost two months ago. I see that on the Sussex Butterfly Conservation sightings page Wendy Wilson spotted one on the 11th October this year at Pulborough. She stated that this was far later than her previous late record of the 7th. So, could this be the last record of a living adult Brown Hairstreak of the year? Has anyone else seen one this late, I'd love to hear about it.

I saw a female about 100 m from this point two years ago but there is very little Blackthorn scrub where yesterday's individual was found. Although there are some fairly impressive English Oaks present, there are very few Ash trees.

2 Response to "The last of the hairstreaks?"

Maurice Gordon Says:

Not bad nick either all things considered. I've seen females in that kind of condition in September. Best views I've ever had were this year at Shipton Bellinger. though I actually saw more males than females.

Graeme Lyons Says:

Yeah, that's what I thought. Where has it been for the last two months? Looking at the way the weather is going now I imagine it was the last flight. Nice photos. I find butterfly posts always generate comments while moth posts, no matter how rare or attractive, tend to remain comentless!

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